William Barker was born in Great Yarmouth and lived in Colchester in West Stockwell Street when his mother Lucy sent him to North School. William, his parents and his 4 brothers and sisters moved to 29 Balkerne Lane sometime after and left Colchester in 1896 when William was 11.
It is not clear what happened to the family next. It is possible that William’s father spent some time in a workhouse in London and it seems that William began to use another name, Clarke. He was married to Edith Kate, possibly Edith Kate Clarke of Colchester. We think that William joined the 2nd Suffolk Regiment and died in a casualty clearing station in France in April 1917. He is buried in Duisans British Cemetery, Etrun, where the cemetery register records William’s marriage to Edith.
Husband of E. K. Woodford (formerly Barker), of 44, Water Works St., Ipswich.
There was another William Barker living in Greenstead, Colchester at the time and it is possible that this is the William listed on the Colchester War Memorial.
1894 – 1903 Admission Register
UK, Soldiers Died in the Great War, 1914-1919
Soliders Effects register